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View Full Version : First official dog show!



Pinky
23rd September 2009, 04:49 PM
Deleted

MARK MARSHALL
23rd September 2009, 05:44 PM
First of all, I wish you a wonderful day, but am also hoping that you have trained your dog for the occasion and that he will 'stand' and not 'sit' !

Obviously you will have him brushed, clean and well presented with spotless teeth etc.

If it really is your first show, it might be daunting but initially tag on the end and see what others do.

Remember a safety pin or proper clip for your number !

Perhaps you have already been to shows and watched and learned the skills ?

There is a lot lot more but others will certainly add to my initial reply.

Regards Mark.

Pinky
23rd September 2009, 11:17 PM
Deleted

sins
23rd September 2009, 11:29 PM
Take a look at http://forum.showdogsireland.com/
There's a good few newbies on there who might be helpful and encouraging.Might be worth signing up?
* I forgot to say good luck with the show.
Sins

MARK MARSHALL
23rd September 2009, 11:34 PM
Dear Pinky,

If you wanted to drive a car - would you enter a F1 Grand Prix without passing a test ?

This is basically what you are doing with your dear Dog who may well find the whole experience off putting and stress him out.

Ideally one should start with smaller less important shows and build up your skills and that of the dog, who is after all - the one being Judged.

You as the handler make it happen and your experience or lack of same will be transmitted down the lead and have an impact on the dog.

If you have not got any experience, my humble opinion would be that you dont walk into the 'Dragon's Den' but take a step back and do ring craft sessions first with Open Shows as your forum to learn.

Jump in with both feet if you want but you may regret it !

Good luck, you may need it. I am trying to help not offend you. Honest.

Mark.

tloghman
25th September 2009, 02:03 AM
Good luck!

cavs r us
25th September 2009, 03:48 AM
good luck!
If he seems nervous and not eager to get out and go in the ring, you can always scratch him, go back and take some classes in handling or attend some "fun" matches where they complete like a show, but it is all for fun, no points.
Some dogs love it, some don't. I have both kinds, a ham that loves it and another one who would rather sit in the crate and not be there, so I have allowed that one to have the life of a princeess at home.

Yorkysue
25th September 2009, 08:32 PM
Good Luck. I agree with Mark though, a Championship show is a bit daunting for a first show for both of you. It is where all the top notch dogs will be. Everyone knows exactly what they are doing, where they should be and how their dogs should behave etc. It isn't really a training ground for a novice, though I'm sure people will try and help. It's just that at this level people are very focussed on their dogs and showing them to their best, and may not have much time to help a novice as they would at a small show.

Have you studied the breed standard, and do you have an indication of how your dog stands up to that standard on show points etc? Not every dog is 'Show Quality' Again going to small shows first will give you an indication of whether your dog is good enough to show at larger shows.

See how you go, you never know - you both could take to it like ducks to water.

Margaret C
26th September 2009, 11:47 PM
Going to your first show can be a strange and bewildering experience for both owner and dog.

A dog that stands still and walks steadily in familiar surroundings can be entirely thrown by the sounds, smells, and the presence of other strange dogs. They may become very silly and excited, pulling at the lead, or very scared, refusing to move and cowering away from the judge.
A dog needs to be confident and happy to catch the judge's eye.

I would suggest that if you cannot get to a ring craft training class before October 3rd, you may do well to treat the day as a training exercise, and be prepared to just spend your time watching what happens in the ring and making it a good experience for Phoenix (take plenty of his favourite little treats) so he will be happy when you go again.

If you do show, you will need to wear your ring number when you go into your class. You will probably get that from the ring steward or it may be given to you when you go in.

When your class is called you need to line up round the ring with the other exhibitors.
IMPORTANT TIP........DO NOT STAND AT THE FRONT OF THE LINE, SO YOU END UP THE LEADER. YOU NEED TO BE ABLE TO WATCH WHAT THE OTHERS DO.
Get your dog to stand still, wag his tail, and give all his attention to you while the judge stands in the middle of the ring and looks at all the dogs.

You will then probably all walk in a circle, for the judge to see how well the dogs walk, & whether they have a good top line and tail set, and then the judge will 'go over' the dogs, one at a time, when they take turns to stand on a small table. This can often be difficult and scary for new show dogs if they have not trained to do this and many dogs will struggle, refuse to stand, or try & jump off the table.

You will then take your dog down from the table & walk in a triangle, & then straight up and down, so the judge can see how well he moves and how good he looks from all angles.

When all the dogs have been seen individually, you may all be asked to walk another circle.
You then stand with your dog again paying attention to you ( this is where practising every day, with little rewards when he does the right thing is worthwhile ) and then the judge will probably 'pull out' and then place the dogs they have chosen as the best in the class.

It may be a good idea to tell the ring steward it is your first show, they may keep a special eye on you.

Rumor
27th September 2009, 12:53 PM
I have no experience with this & never will but I wanted to wish you & Phoenix Good Luck! Post a picture of Phoenix at the show when you get back. :)

Karlin
27th September 2009, 11:10 PM
He's lovely! :)

The IKC I believe do do classes on handling for shows and it would be very wise to do this. I would get there quite a bit before 11 I think -- an hour isn't very much time and most people get there well before that on a day they show, especially at a championship show. Yes you can walk the dog outside but you may want a pee coat to protect his legs and also in case it is raining. There isn't much protection around the show centre.

Also just a question --in the pics it looks like you are trimming his feet; maybe this was a long while ago or it is the just the angle of the shot :); I assume you know that you are not allowed to trim a show cavalier (hair on the bottom of their feet is fine but their slippers shouldn't be trimmed nor hair anywhere else -- that's the breed standard for showing).

Margaret C
28th September 2009, 01:16 AM
Also just a question --in the pics it looks like you are trimming his feet; maybe this was a long while ago or it is the just the angle of the shot :); I assume you know that you are not allowed to trim a show cavalier (hair on the bottom of their feet is fine but their slippers shouldn't be trimmed nor hair anywhere else -- that's the breed standard for showing).

Hello Karlin,

Now there is an interesting point.

You are right about the standard saying no trimming........ but you will never see a show cavalier looking like a typical untrimmed pet cavalier that has just walked off the street.

In the UK, where we do not like big fluffy slippers on our show cavaliers, they will all have neat fur round their paws, just long enough to touch the ground. No straggly bits, nothing ragged or uneven.

Many exhibitors will tell you the hair is kept short and even because their dogs run on gravel.

I have not worked out how that also helps to keeps the ear fringes smoothly rounded, and the complete outline of the dog without one hair out of place.......... but I'm sure it has nothing to do with the trimming scissors peeping out of the grooming bags.

All serious exhibitors ( and I was one of them ) 'tidy' their cavaliers. You cannot afford to not do it if you want to win. Many learn to do it discreetly, in between shows, so it does not look too obvious.

Nowadays many of the top winning dogs are so trimmed that nobody could miss the fact that they have been scissored.

It is one of the points in the standard that nobody bothers about any more.

Karlin
28th September 2009, 01:23 AM
Hello Karlin,


Many exhibitors will tell you the hair is kept short and even because their dogs run on gravel.

I have not worked out how that also helps to keeps the ear fringes smoothly rounded, and the complete outline of the dog without one hair out of place.......... but I'm sure it has nothing to do with the trimming scissors peeping out of the grooming bags.

All serious exhibitors ( and I was one of them ) 'tidy' their cavaliers. You cannot afford to not do it if you want to win. Many learn to do it discreetly, in between shows, so it does not look too obvious.

:rotfl:

Well yes I'd assumed that some of this discreetly happens as they all always look a bit too neat for nature to entirely have taken its course...! But I think feet can look very obvious. :eek: I've also heard ths stories of blacking in dogs' noses, etc. All a myth I am sure! :D

I do have city dogs walked on pavement three to four times a day and have never noticed it affects the length their hair gets too... Lucy walks around on four floor mops it seems if her hairy feet get too long so I keep them neatened but not into the hateful 'cat's feet' look -- I always think they look like bulldogs when groomers shave their feet. But to each his own, some like no hair. I love their hobbit feet. :)

Margaret C
28th September 2009, 01:36 AM
Here is a photo of my handsome boy!

http://i522.photobucket.com/albums/w343/clairebashall/2009_0925Phoenix0005.jpg

http://i522.photobucket.com/albums/w343/clairebashall/2009_0925Phoenix0011.jpg

One more question, I was reading that some dogs have picked up Kennel cough from the shows so I was thinking I should get him vaccinated against it? Do most people who show their dogs have this done? He is never in kennels /boarded so that is why he does not have the kennel cough jab but I was thinking he will be around a lot of other dogs. Let me know what you think.

Thanks.

He certainly is handsome, he has a lovely expression.

The subject of vaccinations is tricky, there are so many different opinions and I think we all have to make up our own mind what level of risk we are willing to take ( and where we think the biggest risk lies, with giving the vaccination, or in not vaccinating against disease )

I have never had the kennel cough vaccination for mine. I think I was put off by something I read when it was first introduced.

I would probably only consider it if I was going to show in an area that had a serious outbreak of Kennel cough.

Brian M
3rd October 2009, 06:27 PM
H Pinky

And well done to you and Phoenix for having a go and seeing that you obviously enjoyed it ,I would be as proud as punch for achieving what you have ,so good luck to the two of you in your future endeavors and always think as you do that your Phoenix is so obviously the best Cavalier In The World.:):):):xctly:.Congratulations

MARK MARSHALL
3rd October 2009, 09:00 PM
Well done for achieving what you have.

But and there is always a but. Have a visit to other shows and do your homework. You may well have and take home the 'best' dog, but that will not equate to success.

A certain 'type' of dog will invariably win and certain personalitues do win more than others - they are good at producing what is in fashion.

You therefore nead a critical eye and have to look at what is doing well and compare your specimen to that.

Showing is expensive and Champ Shows more than others.

Sincerely, all the very best.

Mark.

diddy
4th October 2009, 12:00 PM
Well you did better than I did at my first show. In a Class of 3 we got VHC (5th place):o. I learnt a lot from the experience though and later used one of that judges dogs on this girl and got some stunning pups.

sins
4th October 2009, 01:42 PM
I'm glad you enjoyed your first show:), I'm sure it won't be your last.
Sins

Karlin
4th October 2009, 03:16 PM
Sounds like you had a great time! :)


You may well have and take home the 'best' dog, but that will not equate to success.

Yes, this is a useful thing to understand for any of us interested in showing or thinking about it, so as not to take the judgments in the ring as a criticism of one's 'best' dog at home, as we all know ours are! :lol: But the flip side is also true: simply because we think we have a lovely dog doesn't mean s/he is top show quality, and not to take this personally. There is often a huge difference between what we see as beautiful and what judges and the show community thinks as the best examples of the breed standard across conformation and personality in the ring.

One thing that generally is very useful for anyone wishing to show is to have one's own dog critically analysed, good and bad, by a very experienced show person or judge privately (if you get involved with the club, this should be easy to do with a friendly, experienced member). Also to find a good show mentor, someone who will sit with you at ringside and explain the positives and negatives of the dogs on show and work with you on all aspects of understanding the breed and showing.

While I think each of my cavaliers is beautiful, only one is really 'beautiful' in appearance in what would be desireable in terms of conformation, and that is Lucy, who is a retired show breeding bitch. She was never really shown for a few reasons but was retained in the breeding programme for her many good qualities in health, conformation and personality terms, and has produced solid show dogs.

When I got my first cavalier, Jaspar, like many new cavalier owners I was sure he must be 'show quality' not least as he had his IKC registration (little did I realise how little this means, though I think it is an important starting point when looking for a good breeder that they have recognised national registration, not the 'other' registries); But of course he isn't at all :lol:; he's a lovely pet quality dog (but the 'most beautiful' of all mine, in my own eyes, as he is just that little bit extra special to me). :) Over time I have learned to look at him and see what wouldn't be right for the show ring (only an OK head, thin longish legs, not enough 'bone', gay tail etc)... but he is my idea of a perfect dog in personality, looks and health -- a very healthy dog, heart clear at nearly 6, MRI'd clear of SM twice (at 1 and again at 5.5), fit and very intelligent and intuitive (he does better than many collies at agility! :lol:). He is my once-in-a-lifetime dog where we have that special connection, and ribbons, trophies and prizes mean nothing compared to that. :) But for showing, a person needs to at times be able to separate heart and head and use a cold analytical eye to learn and do well. The same is really true for any area of endeavour of course!

Cathy T
4th October 2009, 05:57 PM
all in all I enjoyed the experience


And that's the important thing! So glad you enjoyed youself and learned some things.